Diggers' Diaries: Sophie's day at Bradford Kaims
My day at Bradford Kaims by Sophie Johnston
A little while ago I went on an archaeological dig near Bamburgh, to a site called Bradford Kaims.
The site was on a farm and you had to walk about a mile to get there. During my day I did some coring which is where you have a metal pole, with two handles on the top, which has an oval shaped bit at the bottom. When you push down and twist the corer it cuts through the earth, taking soil with it. When you pull the corer back up, you will hopefully have found a burnt mound. We did find a burnt mound!
I also did some digging with my very own trowel. I found lots of shiny charcoal and some sandstone. I also found a cheaper version of flint which hadn’t been worked on.
The site is used in June and July for five to eight weeks each year. The site has been used for quite a few years and is loved by many archaeologists. It is only used for five to eight weeks because everything has to be categorised.
I LOVED my day at Bradford Kaims and I would recommend it to all.
I would also LOVE to do it again!!
Blog by Sophie Johnston (9)
About burnt mounds
Burnt mounds are large dumps of fire-cracked stones used to heat water in an age before pottery was widely used. The stones were heated in a fire, and were then added to water placed in wooden containers. The heat from the stones heated the water. Both the hot water and the steam were used for a variety of things: cooking, washing, saunas etc. The size of the burnt mounds at the Bradford Kaims site, some over 10m in diameter, suggests that there could have been many people living in the area, and for a long period of time. The burnt mounds a Bradford Kaims are also associated with wooden platforms, made from huge piles of brushwood, staked into the peat, which were placed alongside the mounds. Their use is still being debated and investigated by the archaeologists, but they explained that the preservation in the wetland is amazing and that artefacts and features that usually decay on an archaeological site do survive, due to the wet conditions.
Dig deeper into our blog by clicking on one of the words above, or search using this box.